Big strain on grains as the weather stays dry

WITH the district as dry as Riverina Territory manager Glen Whitten has ever seen it, concerns regarding summer supply of grain and prices rear their head.

"We haven't been struggling for grain so far as we always seem to get good supply through the network but we need rain or it's going to put a lot of pressure on the grain industry and prices," Mr Whitten said.

It's a network that stretches from local suppliers through to Goondiwindi and the western grain growing regions of New South Wales.

From local grain producers Mr Whitten said the district is back at least 20% of its normal supplies of wheat and barley to the company.

"There's a lot of fallowed ground around at the moment," he said.

"I just took a drive around the district (last week) and it's the driest I've seen it since about 1992... We had a pretty big drought in 2007 but this is as bad as I've seen it, there's just no pasture in sight at the moment."

Recently grain prices have "taken a bit of a kick up" in some instances of up to $10/tonne from the last harvest direct off the header and into storage.

And despite conditions in times of drought, Mr Whitten said the produce picked up by livestock producers has not differed greatly to the good times.

"People are keeping up with the quality products... the volume of product though has gone down. People have sold off so much stock to make their operations more manageable," Mr Whitten said.

Topics:  agriculture grains weather

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